Parkinson’s symptoms and its rate of progression vary from one senior to the next. To slow the progress of the disorder and manage its symptoms, older adults should stay as active as possible. There are a number of hobbies seniors with Parkinson’s might enjoy that can alleviate some of the symptoms while providing other benefits.
1. Doing Craft Projects
Working on craft projects that use the hands strengthens the muscles and nerves, thereby enhancing fine motor skills. Engaging in crafts also encourages brain plasticity by stimulating the visual center and requiring seniors to develop strategies and use problem-solving skills to complete projects. Some of the many types of crafts older adults might enjoy include crocheting, knitting, drawing, painting, and woodworking.
Many seniors in the early stages of Parkinson’s are able to live on their own, but they may need a bit of help with the everyday tasks of life, such as exercising and preparing nutritious meals. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable in-home care. Winnipeg, MB, families trust Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.
Riding a bicycle, either indoors or outside, has been shown to dramatically reduce Parkinson’s symptoms. Bike riding boosts cardiovascular health in addition to strengthening the hips and legs. Enhancing blood flow through the body and brain enables nerves to function at optimal levels. By strengthening the lower body, seniors with Parkinson’s can boost their balance, which helps with gait issues while walking. Cycling outdoors under the sun also elevates mood along with providing opportunities to socialize along the way.
Dancing is another activity that enables seniors to increase balance and get cardiovascular exercise. Listening to music stimulates the brain’s auditory center, and learning new dance steps involves multiple areas of the brain. Seniors with Parkinson’s might enjoy dancing at home with family and friends while playing music, and they can make new friends at community-based dancing events.
Mobility issues in the advanced stages of Parkinson’s disease can make caring for aging adults increasingly challenging. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Winnipeg, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more.
4. Playing an Instrument
Playing an instrument strengthens the muscles in the fingers and hands and enhances fine motor skills. Seniors call on memory to remember how to manipulate the keys to play the correct notes. Music also prevents depression by enhancing mood. Learning to play an instrument stimulates many different regions of the brain while endeavoring to play the correct note or chord. The information gained through learning transfers from short-term to long-term memory for future reference.
5. Playing Video Games
Video games have been shown to provide a variety of benefits for seniors with Parkinson’s. The colorful action-filled graphics keep the brain’s visual center engaged, and seniors must use problem-solving skills to complete each level. Players must also remember how to use a controller or keyboard to accomplish different actions, and fine motor skills come into play. Game consoles using sensors that monitor movements of large muscle groups stimulate the brain further while allowing seniors to play games that also provide exercise, such as Wii tennis or bowling.
Singing minimizes damage to the vocal cords caused by Parkinson’s. The hobby also strengthens the muscles and other soft tissues needed to talk, eat, and swallow. Multiple centers of the brain become activated as seniors remember the words to songs, read music, and hear the notes and words they sing.
Caring for a loved one with Parkinson’s can be extremely challenging, and a compassionate professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support. If your elderly loved one is living with a serious medical condition and needs help managing the tasks of daily living, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a home care service agency you can trust. Our caregivers are available 24/7, there are no hidden fees in our contracts, and we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee on all of our in-home care services. Reach out to us at Home Care Assistance if you need compassionate, professional Parkinson’s care for your loved one. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (204) 489 6000.